Author Interview: Maita Rue
Getting to Know Pinoy Indie Authors
I truly feel Pinoy (Filipino) Indie Authors are underrated and, most times, under appreciated. In support, I am resuming my interviews with Pinoy Indie Authors.
If you’re a Filipino indie author or writer, come join us! You’re welcome — whether you write in English, Taglish, or Tagalog. We’re all in this together!
Author Interview: Maita Rue
For Week 2 of Pinoy Indie Author Interviews, we have no less than Maita Rue – a multi-talented author, artist, and teacher rolled into one!
She’s also a Board Member of the Romance Writers of the Philippines and a Member of SIKAP – Creative Content Creators Association of the Philippines.
About Maita Rue
Maita Rue is a multi-talented individual who wears many creative hats as an author, designer, teacher, and artist. Her passion for literature, especially reading, has evolved into a remarkable journey of crafting her own stories.
Within the pages of her books, Maita’s characters come to life, each with their own compelling destinies that seem to assert themselves. Her storytelling canvas spans across diverse genres, including enchanting Steampunk Victorian tales, immersive Historical Fantasies, and heartwarming Paranormal Romance narratives.
Beyond her literary pursuits, Maita also dedicates her time as a board member of the burgeoning Romance Writers of the Philippines. She is a fervent advocate for promoting healthy and meaningful relationship ideals through the art of well-crafted romance stories. As a member of SIKAP – Creative Content Creators Association of the Philippines, Maita strives to make Filipino-written books a part of the global creative content ecology.
Connect with Maita Rue and purchase her books here:
Q & A with MAITA RUE
What inspired you to become a writer?
I’ve always been writing. As a reader, I voraciously read everything and as I grew up, I liked paranormal, adventure, historical and high fantasy more. In my extra time, I wrote just to challenge myself. I never thought to publish until 2016. My friend Liana Bautista pushed me to publish and the rest is history.
Could you describe your writing routine?
Non-linear. I have no writing routine. Once an idea strikes me and there is nothing else for me to do that requires me to go out or take a meeting, I sit in front of my desktop or laptop and write.
When I’m writing a new story, since the stories are already in my head (more or less), I start with making a scrapbook. Each character and each significant setting must have its own page in the scrapbook. Once I’m happy with my scrapbook, I make a handwritten outline. I transcribe the outline into the computer and expand each scene with the general setting and point of each scene. Only then will I begin to write the story. I go back to a scene and flesh out more details.
Ideas on how to fix a scene comes usually when I’m cooking or in the shower, and I go back to the computer and fix it. When I am happy with my story, I ask a beta reader to read it and give their comments. Finally, after a second or third fix, I send it to an editor.
How do you develop your story ideas?
Unless there is a contest or I am asked to participate in an anthology, stories come naturally in my head. There are a million “movies” playing in my head especially when I’m not concentrating. It’s funny because it feels like a movie and I’m describing what I see in words.
Sometimes, I watch a movie or read a book and I begin to ask the “what if’s.” What if this vampire did this instead? Will the ending change? And I try to write it because I won’t be able to sleep until I do. Then a story comes out of it.
How do you approach creating memorable characters?
Once a character forms in my mind, I make a scrapbook of what they are, what they like and who they interact with. It is hard to just outrightly describe a character and make them stick to your reader’s head.
If you write Asian stories, many characters will often be dark-haired. Most of them will either be in office clothes. For fantasy and historical characters, there is more room to play around with appearances. For the audience (and often myself) to make my characters memorable, I show it by the way they interact with other characters. Their forms of communications will always have an impact. How they talk, how they think, how they eat, just to name a few.
Q & A with MAITA RUE
How do you balance research and creativity in your writing?
For fantasy, there is no holds barred. However, for historical fiction or fiction with historic flavors, there is a lot of research to be done. I have to talk to historians and even ask them to read my book before getting a lecture. It is an on-going balance.
But I’ve learned that to find this flavor, one must not stop learning. Watch every documentary, cross-check everything, join every seminar and let it inspire you. Your creativity is always there. History or research is not something that constrains you in a box. It is merely a challenging parameter that you work around.
What challenges have you faced as an author?
Sometimes, you ask if people will actually read some of your stranger ideas. There would be no comment or movement to it.
There is also a challenge to sell locally. As an author, we’d like to reach home before we reach a global market. Sadly, I have to reach the globe first before people started to notice me locally.
How do you deal with writer’s block or self-doubt?
If I get stuck in one story, I move on to another story. I don’t write linearly and I often have 3-5 stories that are unfinished. Write on one or the other.
Self-doubt? Everyone will feel that. Even the best of writers will feel that. It helps to have friends who will encourage you. Don’t stop. Just don’t stop writing.
What advice do you have for aspiring authors?
Never stop writing. If you aren’t published yet, it’s ok. Keep writing. Challenge yourself. Join every contest and every call for anthology. If you are still unsure, sign up to Web Novel or Wattpad. Just get yourself writing.
Can you give us a sneak peek into your upcoming projects?
I have so many upcoming projects!
- Manananggal story.
- Continuing with Young Taipans of Manila Series. This is supposed to be a set of 5 books about Chinoy Businessmen and women finding love in modern-day Metro Manila.
- Editing Phase of “Mail Order Vampire.” This is a standalone Paranormal Romance.
- Writing a series of books based on the different Ethnolinguistic Groups of Mindanao with co-writer Karl Gaverza.
- My High School Fairytale.
What’s the message in your latest book and why did you choose it?
My latest book is Steam Theatre Masquerade. Let’s just say the characters chose what to say. Lady Gears wanted to live so she did everything, even sing impromptu in front of the famed Phantom of the Steam theatre to save her. For Baron Claushire, he found his childhood friend and wanted to save her no matter the cost.
Sometimes, in life, the cost is not in coin but in communication. Love is the greatest form of communication.
Did you know I wrote a Sea Witch Fantasy Book?
I hope you can also check it out – it might just be worth your time!
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